1. Health

Youth, School, and Kids Sports

Your questions about kids' sports answered: Know the best ways to support your athlete, from tot lot through high school teams.
  1. Advice from Sports Parents (37)
  2. Youth Sports FAQs (6)
  3. Youth Sports Profiles (37)
  4. Youth Sports Safety (17)

The Best Sports for Kids
Joining a sports team encourages your child to be active, make friends, try new skills and learn sportsmanship. So choose sports for kids with care.

Youth Sports Leagues: Questions to Ask Before You Sign Up
Youth sports leagues and programs have different rules and philosophies about player development, safety, and other important issues. Ask these questions before you enroll your young athlete.

Sportsmanship: Teach Your Kids About Winning and Losing in Sports
With kids starting soccer at 3 and swim team at 5, teaching sportsmanship is more important than ever. Forty million kids are playing youth sports today. This means a greater emphasis on winning, but also offers an opportunity to teach sportsmanship early and often. The best time to instill values is when kids are younger.

When Should Kids Start Competitive Sports?
It's tough to know when your child is ready for a competitive sports team. Consider these factors when you're making this difficult decision.

Keep Your Child From Being a Quitter
Find the best ways to respond to "I quit!" Before you say no, try to find the underlying reason.

Dealing with Disappointment in Youth Sports
Dealing with disappointment in sports is an opportunity for kids to learn character traits like resilience, determination, and good sportsmanship.

How to Talk With Your Child's Coach About Problems
If your child is having problems with sports, the coach will want to know. Here's how to talk to the coach to help your child succeed in youth sports.

10 Basics of Sportsmanship for Sports Parents
Parents need to be good sports too. Set an example (for your child--and other parents too!) by following these basic principles of sportsmanship.

10 Basics of Sportsmanship for Kids
Help your young athlete be a team player. Discuss these 10 basic principles of sportsmanship.

Best Warm-Up Exercises for Kids
Warming up before sports or stretching helps kids stay healthy and perform better. Here's how to put together a fun, easy routine.

Parent Volunteers in Youth Sports
If your child plays sports, you will almost surely be askedor more likely, requiredto take on some volunteer work. Find out more about the kinds of jobs volunteer parents do.

Save Money on Youth Sports
Find 10 ways to save money on youth sports, from registering early to snagging a scholarship.

Sports Activities for Kids: Solving Common Problems
Sure, you love to watch your child play, but scheduling and other issues can take a toll. Here's how to survive it all.

How Youth Sports Parents Can Help Kids Thrive
Youth sports provide many benefits. Here's how youth sports parents can make sure young athletes are getting the most from their participation.

What Kids Learn From Sports
Teamwork is a given, but what other valuable lessons can sports teach?

Kids' Sports Fun Factor
What's fun about sports? Hint: It's not winning, trophies, or post-game treats!

Is It Ever Too Late to Start a New Sport?
Does your child need to pick a sport in preschool and stick with it in order to win? Find out if it's ever too late to start something new, and how to help a late starter.

Sports Physicals: What to Expect
Starting in high school or even younger, athletes should get regular sports physicals. Here's what your tween or teen can expect at a pre-participation exam.

Healthy Snacks for Pre-game, Post-game, and Half-Time
Learn what healthy snacks to give kids before a game, after a game, and at half-time. Kids' nutritional needs are different in the hours before and after physical activity, so provide healthy snacks that give young athletes the nutrients they need.

Create a Healthy Sports Snack Policy
Improve half-time or post-game sports snacks by asking your child's league to institute a healthy snack policy. This sample letter to parents will get you started.

Good Sportsmanship for Kids and Families
Learning good sportsmanship is a long-term project, maybe even a life-long one. We have the resources to help your family build this important skill.

Youth Sports Participation: 10 Things You May Not Know
Has it been awhile since you kicked a ball or swung a bat? Brush up on these 10 important kids' sports issues.

5 Great Gifts for Coaches
Keep coaches' gifts simple and practical, but heartfelt enough to show your appreciation.

Basics of Youth Hockey Equipment
There are many different pads and guards that kids need to stay safe while playing youth ice hockey. USA Hockey requires the following safety gear for all players, at all practices and games.

Sports Specialization: What's Safe, What's Not
When is it OK for kids to specialize in one sport, playing year-round and training intensively?

Show Your Support: Coach Is a Tough Job
When you support the coach, your child learns more and will likely enjoy sports more too. You can help support coaches even if you don't know anything about your child's sport.

Help Your Child Cope with Sports Anxiety
Game-day jitters, performance pressure, sports anxiety: As kids get more competitive in sports, worries get bigger too. Here's how to help.

How to Coach Your Own Kid
Switching between the coach role and the parent role is tricky, but can be meaningful too.

Sports Team Bonding Activities for Kids
Getting a team to gel takes time--and fun activities, like outings and craft projects.

Find the Best Sports Camps for Kids
A summer sports camp can help your child strengthen skills, meet new people, learn new things, and have fun. Learn more about how to choose the right camp for your sports-loving kid.

Balance Kids' Sports and the Family Schedule
When one kid has practice here and another has a game waaay over there , at the same time, what's a parent to do? It's true that kids' sports and other activities can wreak havoc on the family schedule, especially when you have more than one child. These time management tips will help you organize your family schedule so you can fit in the...

Help Women's Sports
Want to help girls succeed in sports and life? Show support for women's sports!

Teach Sportsmanship with Books
Help school-age kids learn big lessons about winning, losing, and fair play with these appealing books (that don't feel like lectures).

How to Host a Sports Gear Swap
Through a sports-gear swap, you can save your child's old gear from the landfill by passing it on to another family--plus benefit from other kids' leftovers too.

Great Sports Books for Tweens and Teens
Reading a book about sports can help adolescents think about and discuss tough issues like ethics, sportsmanship, and friendship.

Multitasking for Sports Parents
Shuttling kids to lessons, classes, and other events can leave sports parents with lots of waiting time to fill. Here are 10 ways to come prepared.

Benefits of Girls' Sports
Whether you were a girl athlete, you're the parent of one, or both, share your thoughts: What benefits do sports bring to girls? Why are sports important for girls, or for you or your daughter in particular?

What to Say to Your Child After a Game or Sporting Event
Win or lose, boost your child's self-esteem with supportive comments and questions after games, races, and other sporting events.

What Is a Travel Team
Understand the term "travel team" (also known as elite, select, or tournament team) as it relates to youth sports.

Ready to Return in Mind and Body
When your child is injured, pay attention to his mental, as well as physical, readiness to return to play.

Competing to Excel
What motivates your athlete to succeed? Competing to excel is a healthier approach that can boost self-esteem.

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